MIDDLETOWN, Conn. – Junior guard Olivia Gorman of the Wesleyan University women's basketball team dropped 21 points on 8-of-15 shooting Friday night to help guide the Cardinals to a 74-62 win over Colby College in Silloway Gymnasium.
Wesleyan—who has clinched a berth to the NESCAC Championships for the first time since the 2013-14 season—improves to 16-6 overall and 5-4 in the conference. The 16 wins are the most since the 2007-08 campaign. Despite a game-high 26 points from Haley Driscoll, the Mules drop to 10-13 and 3-6.
FIRST HALF HIGHLIGHTS:
- Both teams came out scoring to start the game and exchanged baskets early and often.
- With 2:16 remaining in the first quarter, a three-point play by Driscoll evened the score at 12-12. However, a three from Maeve Vitale '18 seconds later put the Cardinals back on top.
- Wesleyan led the rest of the quarter and a layup by Heidi Scarth '20 with 00:39 remaining on the clock capped off a 9-0 run.
- Shortly after, a layup by Driscoll with 00:20 cut the deficit to seven as the Cardinals took a 21-14 lead after one.
- Despite a 6-0 run by Colby to open the second, the Cardinals led the entire quarter and held a nine-point lead with 5:02 remaining.
- The Mules wouldn't back down as they slowly cut into the lead. A foul shot by Sarah Hancock with 00:07 on the clock got the visitors within two at halftime, 35-33.
SECOND HALF HIGHLIGHTS:
- The third quarter went back-and-forth often and with 5:59 to play, a jumper by Driscoll tied the game at 40-40.
- Just 25 seconds later, a layup by Paige Russell put the visitors ahead (42-40) for the first time since the 8:37 mark of the first quarter.
- Vitale answered, however, with a three-pointer on the other end of the court.
- Wesleyan held Colby scoreless the final 1:48 of the quarter while scoring four unanswered to take a 55-50 lead entering the fourth.
- The Cardinals never trailed in the fourth quarter. A jumper by Russell in the opening seconds cut the deficit to one, 55-54, but it proved to be the closest the visitors would get.
- A 6-0 run by Wesleyan capped off by a jumper from Tara Berger '19 put the Cardinals ahead by 10 with 2:15 remaining.
- Colby was held to a mere three points in the final 5:18 of play as Wesleyan pulled away for the 12-point victory.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Wesleyan was terrific from the foul line, hitting 25-of-30 shots. The Cardinals were also 45.7-percent (21-46) from the floor and 43.8-percent (7-16) from behind-the-arc. The Mules shot 45.0-percent (27-60) as a team.
- Gorman was joined in double-figures by Berger and Vitale with 15 and 14 points, respectively. Berger was 4-of-7 from the floor and a perfect 7-of-7 from the foul line. She also grabbed a game-high eight rebounds and dished out three assists. Vitale was 3-of-4 from downtown and 5-of-5 from the charity stripe. Ava Tompkins '20 recorded a game-high five assists, and Maddie Bledsoe '18 and Chynna Bailey '19 each grabbed seven boards.
- Driscoll finished with 26 points on 12-of-23 shooting while also pulling in a team-high five boards and leading the Mules with four assists. Russell added 12 points on 5-of-9 shooting and Ainsley Burns scored nine.
- The Cardinals return to Silloway Gymnasium tomorrow, Feb. 10 and will host No. 5 Bowdoin on "Senior Day". Wesleyan's regular-season finale will tip-off at 3 p.m.